Journal of International Relations, European, Economic and Social Studies
In foreign policy Turkey’s special relations with the countries of the Middle East, the Caucasus, the Balkans and Central Asia might add new dimensions to European foreign policy.
Turkey has become an energy hub between the oil and gas producing countries of the region and Europe at a time when the need for energy is constantly growing.
In view of all this, it seems conclusive that Turkish membership will bring more good than harm to Europe. If Turkey and the EU considers what they on can do together, a different picture and a more positive perspective for their common future must emerge. Obviously particular problems - the Cyprus issue and the Armenian question - require special attention. More time and energy will need to be spent to these problems. However, if the larger picture is ignored and mutual benefits are overlooked; and if the prospects for membership are made hostage to smaller and issues, all may be the losers. If EU membership is used as leverage against Turkey to get unilateral concessions on some issues, I suspect that the results obtained would not be much different from what has been achieved so far: no Turkish government will be ready to make unilateral concessions. If some countries aim to block Turkish membership for other reasons; and if they use these individual issues as excuses to delay the membership process of Turkey, there will be no winners in this political game. It appears that two main problems worry some of Turkey’s European friends: first, Turkey will join Europe as a major country and that will affect the balance of power among larger members. Because voting rights in the European Council are determined according to the population of member countries, Turkey will rank right after Germany’s share (9.55%.) That is to say, Turkey’s share would be around 9% of total EU votes, whereas France has 8.11%, UK 8%, Italy 7.95%, Greece 3.49% and Cyprus, 0.98%. In the European Parliament with increased powers, the Turkish delegation will be second in size right after Germany.
Turkey on the European doorstep
Published on Feb 16, 2012
A Publication based on the International Conference organised at the European Parliament/Brussels by Dr. ELENI THEOCHAROUS, Member of the Eu...